When talking about sidewalks, most people instantly form a picture of an unappealing, gray sidewalk in their heads. But what if you can change that?. Why not let your imagination loose, and have a custom-made sidewalk that will make your house or business stand out from any other?
West Mount Concrete staff will assist you in choosing a sidewalk that’s fun and original, but still graceful and not tacky. Give a new look to your property and impress your guests or clients!
Concrete Sidewalks – manufacturing technology of concrete tracks
In the improvement of large and small settlements, the condition of house paths and sidewalks, public transport stops and areas for drying clothes, etc. is of great importance.
Neither in private nor in industrial construction work can be considered completed until the improvement of the adjacent territory has been completed. Paths and sidewalks play a major role in this. The construction of such “structures” is not particularly difficult; they do not require any special technologies, mechanisms, or high qualifications.
In most cases, when carrying out such work, classic types of building materials are used such as: paving slabs and pavers, asphalt concrete (asphalt), concrete mixes and sand concrete. Each of the options for paving has its pros and cons. Today we would like to introduce you to the technology of concreting tracks. Making a concrete track is the fastest and cheapest way to create a quality and durable coating.
Concrete Sidewalks includes the following tasks:
– removal of plant soil: since it significantly complicates the compaction of the base and accumulates moisture under the coating, which is extremely undesirable; – the device of the base of crushed stone. You can also make a base from a layer of sand of a large fraction with a height of 5-10 cm, and the same height of the crushed stone layer;
– Installation of curbs: (if provided for in the project). It must be installed so that there is a drain for water. The border in this case should be at the same level with the surface of the sidewalk or platform. The seams between the curb stones are sealed with a thick cement mortar. If the track is made without borders, you need to install the formwork from the boards, and in places where the track bends smoothly – from plywood.
– concreting: The thickness of the concrete layer should not be less than 7 cm. To prevent voids, laying must be done with a platform vibrator (for large areas) or with a manual rammer until cement milk appears on the surface. After 30-40 minutes, the surface is finished completely with the help of a trowel. It is best to use ready-mixed mortars for concreting, but in private construction with small amounts of work, you can prepare it yourself. To do this, mix cement, sand, gravel in a ratio of 1: 2: 3 and dilute the mixture with water to a plastic state (water is taken about 1 – 1.5 times more than cement)
– device of temperature joints: in the concrete coating of paths and sidewalks, every 3 to 6 meters of length, a deformation (temperature) joint is made of a wooden strip 15–20 mm thick laid over the entire thickness of the coating. The device of such a seam avoids cracking when the air temperature changes.
A few tips for those who are going to make Concrete Sidewalks on their own.
If the soil at the base of the sidewalk or platform is loose, uneven, or simply in doubt, you need to reinforce the concrete pavement with a road mesh with a mesh size of 100×100 or 150×150 mm. It is also necessary to reinforce the access road to the site.
It is very important to use high-quality materials at Concrete Sidewalks – ready-mixed concrete, curbs, tiles, buying them from manufacturers who constantly monitor product quality and value the reputation of the enterprise.
When ordering ready-mixed concrete, you need to order it about 10% more than the calculated one. Firstly, if there is not enough solution, no company will bring you a solution less than the minimum possible rate. Secondly, when unloading the solution into the intermediate tank, part of it invariably sticks to the walls.
If you prepare concrete with your own hands, it is advisable to do it closer to the place of work in order to unload the mixture directly on the track or not to lose a lot of time on the way to the container with the mortar and back. At the end of work, immediately wash all tools thoroughly.
To give the track an increased strength, you can iron it: for this you need to rub the sifted cement into a still wet mixture until a gloss on the surface appears.
Sidewalk Concrete – Benefits
Modern landscaping and construction is impossible without the use of concrete. With the help of this material, you can quickly and with great strength build any structure, including and enclosing during the construction of roads.
Concrete Sidewalks have the following advantages:
- the possibility of decorating;
- simplicity of laying, which does not involve third-party performers;
- resistance to abnormal atmospheric phenomena and increased mechanical stress.
- Concrete Sidewalks are also not without cons:
- cracks are possible during subsidence;
- in case of changing the layout of the territory, the track is difficult to dismantle;
- the slightest deviation from the technology when laying threatens with marriage with the subsequent destruction of the coating.
Do-it-yourself pavement made of concrete in several stages:
- plot surface is marked;
- formwork is made and installed;
- sand cushion is formed;
- reinforcement is installed (diameter of rods 3-5 mm), after which the pavement is poured with concrete.
Thus, skills are required to conduct monolithic work. When preparing the solution, you can limit yourself to cement and sand in the proportion of concrete for the sidewalk, respectively 1: 3. Although in the overwhelming majority of cases, in order to save and achieve greater hardness, 2 fractions of crushed stone are added to them; it should not be a large fraction, because otherwise the opposite effect will be observed. The mixture is diluted with water very carefully, because a double excess of the volume of water lowers the grade of concrete by 5 points.
The product is evenly poured into the formwork, smoothed out with a special tool (iron, rule). This requires accuracy and patience. The final stage is drying. The formwork is covered with a plastic film, and the concrete is allowed to gradually harden and reach the standard. The longer this process lasts, the stronger the track will end up. At least experts say that it gains the final degree of strength a month after pouring.
An important positive circumstance can be considered the relatively low cost of paving concrete. Without taking into account the complexity of creation, a monolith is an economically advantageous solution. In comparison with this method, laying finished panels made in an industrial environment seems to be more inconvenient, expensive, but solid and reliable.
Recommendations for filling footpaths from experts:
Since concrete in such cases is considered an ideal field for creative experiments, color variation of the finished product is allowed due to the addition of construction dyes to the solution.
It is undesirable to decorate the texture of concrete with small artisanal notches, grooves, and grooves – let its surface remain as smooth as possible. Such excesses will contribute to the early destruction of the product.
It is best to use sea or river sand, since the quarry contains harmful impurities (primarily clay).
Despite the additional cost of reinforcing, it will significantly strengthen the sidewalk, extending its life.
Fine gravel is preferred. In this case, there will be no need to fear that the surface cannot be leveled.